There are many great books out there that help leaders determine their strengths and weaknesses, but the one that Entrepreneur’s Martin Zwilling strongly suggests for those starting out is John Mattone’s Intelligent Leadership, which shows nine different traits every effective leader displays to one degree or another.
He points out that truly effective leaders not only know their strengths but their weaknesses so that the hiring process is about building a well-rounded company.
Here’s just a sampling of the types Mattone discusses and Zwilling summarizes:
1. Helpers. Mature helpers are considerate and genuinely the most sensitive and caring of all the leadership types. They are excellent mentors and coaches, but have a strong need to be admired and respected in return. Strengthen this trait by being more conscious of your need to be liked, and don’t be possessive or controlling.
2. Entertainers. Entertainers gain the respect of others with drive, determination, hard work and the ability to win people over. But they can become fixated with appearing successful, showing more style than substance, or undermine themselves by exaggeration, inflating their importance, or trying to win or one-up all the time.
(Incidentally, if you’re growing weary of reading about leadership in the non-fiction genre, check out Richard Adam’s classic Watership Down in which Hazel shows some impressive self-awareness of the kind Zwilling discusses. At the very least, though, take encouragement that if a bunch of bunnies can survive striking out on their own, so can you.)
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